Chief of Party – Uzbekistan

About Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps is powered by the belief that a better world is possible. To do this, we know our teams do their best work when they are diverse and every team member feels that they belong. We welcome diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be stronger and have long term impact.

Program / Department Summary

Mercy Corps was recently awarded the USDA McGovern-Dole Food for Education program in Uzbekistan.

The objectives of the program are to:

  • Promote reading readiness in preschools and homes through the provision of age-appropriate pre- literacy activities, training and mentoring of preschool teachers and school administrators on pre- literacy instruction and enhancing community and family support for reading;
  • Improve nutrition of children and their families through the provision of school meals, and promotion and improvement of dietary diversity;
  • Improve school infrastructure and the learning environment of preschool children through the construction or rehabilitation of preschool kitchens, classrooms and water and sanitation facilities;
  • Increase knowledge of nutrition, health, and hygiene practices and safe food preparation and storage practices, by facilitating training for cooks, parents, and school officials;
  • Improve student attendance in preschools through the provision of daily school meals, improved learning environment, and access to clean water and sanitation.

The program targets preschools in the Autonomous Region of Karakalpakstan and the southern region of Surkhandarya. Mercy Corps is partnering with ACTED (Agence d’aide à la Coopération Technique Et au Développement) who will lead activities to rehabilitate 35 preschools in Surkhandarya.

Mercy Corps previously implemented programs in Uzbekistan from 1994-2007 ranging from strengthening civil society, enhancing economic development and supporting vulnerable groups with targeted assistance. In addition to these programs, Mercy Corps also founded a micro-credit institution in Uzbekistan, Barakot, to provide communities, especially women entrepreneurs, with access to loans and credit services; increase income generation; stimulate the local economy; and promote gender equity. Mercy Corps is currently pursuing re-registration in Uzbekistan.

Mercy Corps is seeking a Chief of Party (CoP) to manage overall implementation of project activities, operations and advocacy with the Government of Uzbekistan (GoU) in support of FFE program objectives. Mercy Corps’ vision for change requires the private sector, government and civil society to work together to create meaningful and sustainable change.

General Position Summary

The CoP will be highly experienced in a broad spectrum of technical focus areas with responsibility for establishing and managing systems to ensure cohesion across all technical sectors in the program (Nutrition and Dietary diversity, WASH and Pre-literacy education). S/he will also make sure technical interventions are integrated, layered and sequenced appropriately at all levels of implementation.

Essential Job Responsibilities


  • Provide overall technical guidance and leadership, mentoring, quality control and coordination to strengthen program outcomes.
  • Lead the development of detailed implementation plans, performance monitoring plan, Results Framework, Evaluation Plan and other deliverables flowing from the project workplan, and ensure the delivery of the same.
  • Support the establishment of a program structure that favors integration between all sectors.
  • Ensure that cross-cutting themes such as adaptive management, resilience and sustainability are fully included within the program strategy.
  • Ensure that program implementation is responsive to communities and GoU policies/priorities, and is consistent with Mercy Corps’ relevant program guidelines, principles, value and quality standards.
  • In coordination with the country Monitoring and Evaluation department, monitor the implementation of activities through regular field visits and assessments to ensure program quality and impact.
  • Provide managerial and programmatic oversight to partners and sub-grantee(s).
  • Document processes and achievements to ensure best practices are captured and disseminated. This will include the continual re-evaluation of program activities and information, with resulting activity adjustments in keeping with new insights.
  • Produce written reports on program activities, capturing the impacts of activities.
  • Create and follow effective stakeholder management plans, ensuring sound and proactive communications with Mercy Corps Uzbekistan, partner organizations, Mercy Corps headquarters, USDA, Government of Uzbekistan authorities, and colleague agencies.
  • Conduct frequent field visits to all project sites – spend up to 40-50% of time in the field.


  • Oversee program implementation team, ensuring that all staff are following workplans, activities are on schedule, and project deliverables are completed as planned.
  • Develop and oversee implementation of capacity building strategy for team members that promotes a culture of learning through systematic analysis and reflection of program data and lessons learned.
  • Promote accountability, communicate expectations and provide constructive feedback via regular performance reviews.
  • Supervise and manage all program staff to ensure day-to-day activities are implemented in a coordinated fashion according to schedule, budget and quality.
  • Supervise and manage all program partnerships to ensure sound coordination in the context of an overall program strategic and resilience-building framework.
  • Manage and help with the recruitment, orientation, professional development and ongoing training of FFE staff to ensure they are of the quality and technical capacity necessary to ensure the successful implementation of activities.


  • In collaboration with the country program’s operations and finance departments, ensure proper financial management, procurement, administration, human resources and logistics (including transport, warehousing and asset management) needs of the program are conducted within Mercy Corps’ policy and with the maximum benefit to the program.
  • Monitor adherence to grant agreement, Mercy Corps’ policies and procedures and relevant external rules and regulations, including those of the government of Uzbekistan.


  • Liaise with and represent program to USDA and other cooperating stakeholders.
  • Represent Mercy Corps at government, donor, NGO and other relevant events in the field
  • Ensure close coordination and information sharing with consortium partners, sub-grantees, local government and other implementers, as well as with other Mercy Corps programs.
  • Establish and maintain relationships with communities and local government.


  • Ensure compliance with security procedures and policies as determined by country leadership.
  • Proactively ensure that team members operate in a secure environment and are aware of policies.


  • Contribute to program visibility and advocacy work by assisting in dissemination of program research and learning information. Represent Mercy Corps in forums with the broader humanitarian and development community.
  • Active contributor and collaborator with regional and global counterparts to promote best practices.

Supervisory Responsibility : Deputy Chief of Party, Finance and Compliance Manager, HR Manager, Communication Specialist, ME Manager, Program Technical Specialists.

Reports Directly To : Regional Director – Asia

Works Directly With: Sector leads/program managers, field teams, the MEL team, partner organizations and other implementers, Deputy Regional Director, Director Program Quality and Technical Support, Mercy Corps HQ Regional program Team, Technical Support Unit, Country Finance Manager, Country M&E Manager, Communications Specialist


Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our beneficiaries and to the international standards that guide international relief and development work, while actively engaging beneficiary communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.

Knowledge and Experience

  • MA/S or equivalent experience in food security, nutrition, public health, development studies, social sciences, or other relevant field.
  • At least 10 years of relevant experience in positions of progressively greater responsibility in programming in a developing country context.
  • At least five years in a senior management role is required with experience in project management related to multi-sectoral, FFP/FFE funded activities strongly preferred.
  • Demonstrated experience developing and ensuring quality control for technically rigorous nutrition, food security and/or health programming.
  • Experience providing leadership, supervising staff, managing multiple complex program components, and convening people across technical teams to build consensus and achieve an outcome.
  • Experience with USAID and/or USDA rules, regulations and requirements is preferred.
  • Fluency in written and spoken English and Russian.
  • Preference for experience with USDA-funded programs.
  • Experience in Uzbekistan preferred.

Success Factors

A successful candidate will have a demonstrated ability to lead and communicate effectively with team members and other stakeholders of varied work styles and cultures, follow procedures and meet deadlines with flexibility and creativity in planning and problem solving. This position requires an ability to think creatively about improving food and nutrition security. S/he will have a proven ability to learn quickly, multi- task, prioritize, take initiative, and be accountable for results, understand the larger picture while remaining focused on the details, problem solving, work within a complex and sensitive setting and to follow laws and security protocols. The most successful Mercy Corps team members have a strong commitment to teamwork and accountability, thrive in evolving and changing environments and make effective written and verbal communication a priority in all situations.

Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions

This position will be based in Tashkent. The location is accompanied and secure. Housing is individual accommodation with complete freedom of movement in Tashkent and other locations in the country for which no travel restrictions exist. There are several international schools in Tashkent. Staff have access to reasonable quality healthcare services in Tashkent and access to reliable water services. Access to electricity during the hot season can be less reliable, with the occasional power cut. This position requires at least 25% travel by plane and vehicle to field offices in environments that for the most part are secure. This position is not eligible for hardship and/or R&R benefits.

Mercy Corps team members represent the agency both during and outside work hours when deployed in a field posting or on a visit/assignment to a field posting. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and Mercy Corps’ policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.

Fostering a diverse and open workplace is an important part of Mercy Corps’ vision. Mercy Corps is an Equal Opportunity Employer regardless of background. We are committed to creating an inclusive environment.

Ongoing Learning

In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and development.

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives.

We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.

Equal Employment Opportunity

Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact.

We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.

Safeguarding & Ethics

Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC. We will not tolerate child abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members. As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and to adhere to Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct elearning courses upon hire and on an annual basis.

How to apply

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